This time we have the following boats:

Send a picture or three and a short description of your boat and its launch to for inclusion here next month.


There is still a lot to do, but I got to the point where the location of oarlocks, seat etc. had to be tested, so there was no choice but to launch the boat. Pictures are in this Flickr set.

The boat I have been rowing for the past 4 years is a 14' Whitehall type, known as a decent pulling boat, so my comparisons are to that. The Walkabout is stretched to 17" 10".

SPEED: Steady long distance rowing speed for the Whitehall has been 3 - 3.5 kts, and Walkabout measures about the same on GPS. This is great, I was afraid the bigger boat would be slower. Pulling very hard, Walkabout got to 4.5 - 5 kts, faster than the smaller boat probably due to longer waterline. Even at this speed there is very little wake generated, where the Whitehall would be surging and making waves.

STABILITY: The Whitehall is sensitive to fore and aft trim, and more tippy. With two people in Walkabout, not trimmed properly as there is only one rowing position at the moment, it made very little difference in speed. I can also sit out on one side seat and the rail is still well above the water.

APPEARANCE: Although some people in our local plastic and aluminum boat community would comment on the Whitehall, I am not able to row very far before someone wants to know about the cool wooden boat. I guess this doesn't help the speed...

I now have a boat with much more room for passengers and storage, camp aboard capability, and the same performance as the smaller boat. Thank you, John, for the design and for steering me to Walkabout as a pulling boat.



Let me introduce you to Cynthia-Lynn, as you can see she is Jim's 13 foot Toto design. This is my first boat building project and I doubt it will be my last.

She is named Cynthia-Lynn in honor of my sister who passed away this February from cancer.

I want to thank you and Sandra for all of the great supplies I ordered through Duckworks. I also want to thank you for replying to my emails when I had questions - you were there with sound advise...

Thanks again - Bill Shurbert

Nordlund Skiff

The Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding, is proud to announce that the latest version of the Nordlund Skiff was launched Friday May 14th under the watchful eyes of its designer Dale Nordlund in Port Hadlock WA by students and staff at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding.

Dale Nordlund is a well-known local boatbuilder who apprenticed in Seattle in the mid-1940's. He first drew the lines for this Pacific Northwest skiff in the mid-1950's. Several skiffs were built to these lines at that time.

Traditional Small Craft class students lofted the boat with the help of instructor Jeff Hammond, and built the boat under the guidance of instructors Ben Kahn and Ray Speck between January and May as one of the craft in their curriculum. Students Bryan Mann, Hannah Lynch, Max Richter, Walt White, Bill PostvanderBurg, and Jeremy Cole all worked on the boat.

The Nordlund Skiff is lapstrake-built and traditionally constructed of copper riveted red cedar planking, larch guards, Sitka spruce risers, and locally harvested black locust knees and breasthook. The boat is 11 feet 6 inches long.

Students and staff celebrated the launch with a picnic under brilliantly sunny skies at the Port Hadlock launch ramp next to the School on Friday afternoon, May 14th 2010.

Left to right: Traditional Small Craft students Bryan Mann, Hannah Lynch, Max Richter, Walt White, Bill PostvanderBurg, Jeremy Cole, designer Dale Nordlund, instructor Ray Speck and the Nordlund Skiff built by the students at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding in Port Hadlock WA. (Picture by Peter Leenhouts.)

Boat School Traditional Small Craft student Bill PostvanderBurg rowing the Nordlund Skiff May 14th, 2010. (Picture by Peter Leenhouts)
Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding
42 N. Water Street
Port Hadlock, WA 98339
(360) 385-4948
General info:

Kwik Kwak

That photo was taken at CLC's OkoumeFest last weekend on the Chesapeake Bay. We had so much wind and waves that the CLC folks did not let their demo boats sail. My Kwik Kwak is an OZ Mk II with regulation hull shape, quite by accident, because I had no idea there was any difference and so when I got MIK's plans and changed design mid-build, it just ended up that way. The boat flies due to the 89 sq ft balanced lugsail. I have a couple of good video clips of Kwik Kwak on Beaver Creek Reservoir, Crozet, VA. I have uploaded a video clip of the boat.

Later, Paul Helbert


Here are some pictures of our first sail with the Kiwi PDR.  Those are my three boys Lukas (in the back), Joshua (my red headed Viking), and Oliver (with the goggles).

It sailed beautifully windward and down wind.  I kept stalling on a tack once, but I've thought of a couple of reasons:  I had my wife in the boat also and I didn't have a good feel for when I should move my rear end over, it may be the weakness of the leg-o'-mutton rig that it has a "bad" tack, and the wind had shifted a bit so I got confused about where I was in relation to it.

The boat really is beautiful, almost sexy with all those curves.  And personally that is exactly how I like it.  I'm all for practicality and being utilitarian, but looking good...well...that just makes the world seem all right.

Thank you John Welsford for designing such a beautiful boat!  I couldn't be happier and my boys absolutely LOVE the boat.


Mushulu 14

G'day Everyone,


It rained all last week and Cowell struck a king tide on Saturday - thought there was no hope of launching. On Sunday, with a bit of wind and a few showers we were still in with a chance. After lunch, had a break in the weather, so a few of us said, 'Yeh, why not? Let's do it'. I'm glad we did.

With 30 hp the Mushulu flew like the wind. Absolutely fantastic. The harbour was pretty rough and water looked murky, so being the first try I kept it in the break water just to see what it was like, she got up and planed beautifully. Quite a few of my parishioners came down to see the launching, we popped a bottle and sprinkled her with some bubbly, after the first run, they said it sat really well in the water and looked stable. I'm more than happy with the final product. It's a wonderful boat and I'm really surprised how well it went and how nice it goes in the water.

Yesterday, Liz and I took the M14 into a boat shop to have the HIN plate fixed, one of the staff walking past, stopped, looked, came over and said, "Gee, that's a nice rig mate, build that yourself, or did you buy it?". Say no more.

Thanks Mark for your input, your encouragement and expertise. Keep the designs coming. Now I can't wait until we get a nice break in the weather, give her a good run and finally catch some fish. It's been a great project from start to finish, and a beautiful boat indeed.

Until the next one, happy boat building.

Regards Mat.

Plans for the Mushulu 14 are available at Duckworks. For more information see Bowdidge Marine Designs.

GIS launching in Houston Texas

First yawl rigged Goat Island Skiff is Launched.

John Goodman & family just launched the first yawl rigged Goat Island Skiff. The Goat Island Skiff ,GIS, is a design from Australia by Michael Storer. Collaborating together, Clint Chase Boat Builder in Portland Maine and Mik, as he is called, in Australia designed the yawl rig while John and his family built the boat over a 6 month period in their garage. John would like to warn our readers that promising your children that they can name and pick the color of the boat can lead to an interesting result. GIR, (just Google it) painted lime-green, was launched was June 13.

The GIS can be built using very simple woodworking tools. John’s favorite tool was the Japanese pull saw. Bulkheads are built first then 6mm marine grade plywood in bent around the frames. No strong back is needed. John used gaboon marine grade plywood, western red cedar for frames, fir rub rails and spruce gunnels. John’s hull weighed in at 141 pounds before hardware and rigging.

Construction pics are at:

Built by John D Goodman & family.

Walkabout Launched

My Walkabout was finally launched yesterday after a week of being almost finished.

Pics and a short account here:
(note: new blog address).

Thanks to John for his beautiful design, to everyone here who provided advice and encouragement - including the indirect encouragement of all on the forum whose presence, even as lurkers, is evidence of our shared dreams.

All the best, see you around!


Gene Launches "Spring Fever"

We finally got "Spring Fever" launched last weekend in Rend Lake, IL. There is a messabout there once a year and I was determined to be there with my new boat. The boats designer, Kilburn Adams, is usually there along with some other SA20 owners. There were five of us in all this year. The boat was still not totally finished lacking some electrical wiring, the brass port lights and the Bimini. I took the Bimini with me to install there but was missing two parts so had to do without it. Kilburn and By helped me launch it which I appreciated as I have never owned a boat this size in my life. Kilburn gave me pointers on controlling the boat as it is very light for its size and wind affects it very easily. Overall it was a very good experience.



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